Rolling coverage of the second day of the Tory conference in Birmingham where Philip Hammond will give the day’s key speech at noon
Hammond is undertaking a mammoth round of interviews, where he has spent much of his time either talking up the Chequers plan or – when asked by interviewers – talking down Boris Johnson. Here’s a few of the quotes, harvested from the Press Association.
It isn’t about taking back control, it’s about fantasy world. The European Union have been very clear that as they negotiate with us they have their red lines, just as we have our red lines, and they are not prepared to negotiate for a free trade agreement which includes the whole of the United Kingdom because of the impact that would have on the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.
We can spend our time sitting at a table, banging it and demanding something that our negotiating partners have clearly told us is not on offer, or we can try to find a way through with a solution that works for Britain and will also be acceptable to them within their red lines.
I think it’s more likely than not that we will achieve a negotiated agreement with the EU, and I think that because, when I talk to other member states of the EU, I hear that what they want is a smooth exit for the UK.
Of course they are disappointed that we are leaving, but they accept now that we are.
Welcome to the second day of the Conservative party conference in Birmingham and for one day only you have me, Peter Walker, in the chair in place of Andrew. If Sunday was marked by some brutal, rats-in-a-sack jostling among senior Tories, it’s looking much the same today. The one surprise might be the main protagonist so far: Philip Hammond.
The usually carefully-worded chancellor heralded his speech to the main hall later this morning with an interview in the Daily Mail in which he indulged in this year’s main conference sport: making fun of Boris Johnson.